September is an opportunity for fresh starts and new beginnings. After the exciting and carefree joys of summer, I find September is an ideal time to reflect and reset my intentions. No matter the season or what’s going on in your life, here are five places to retreat to when you need to reflect.
1. Forest Trail
Many people claim that they do some of their best thinking while they’re walking. Add in the health and wellness benefits of green space, and you’re set up for some powerful reflection. A study also showed that walking boosts creativity, meaning that you will also likely be better at brainstorming and problem solving.
2. Coffee Shop
Maybe you need a change of scenery, but the weather outside is gloomy or cold. Head over to your favourite coffee shop and grab a warm, soothing cuppa. If you’re reflecting on an issue you’re experiencing with another person, this is especially effective because a study showed that physical warmth promotes interpersonal warmth.
3. Friend’s House
Sometimes you just need to get your thoughts out of your head and into the world. Call up a close friend and ask if they will listen to you think out loud for a bit. Hearing your thoughts aloud can often bring insight. Your friend can act as a sounding board, and if you’re open to it, they might have some interesting opinions of her own to share from an outside perspective.
4. Park Bench
If you want to head outside but don’t feel like going for a walk, head over to a nearby park and sit yourself down on a bench. Take the time to stop moving and doing, and just sit with your thoughts. As with going for a walk, you still get the benefits of fresh air and a beautiful view of nature. Bonus if you can hear the soothing sounds of a nearby lake or creek.
It’s interesting the clarity you can obtain by actually writing down your thoughts. Sometimes it feels like they get so jumbled in your head, swirling round and round. When you write them out, however, you are forced to organize your thoughts into moderately coherent sentences. While searching for the right words, new and surprising associations or trains of thought may develop.
Where are your places to retreat to when you need to reflect?